(Editor’s note: This content is provided by Humana, a Next Avenue sponsor.)
Just as we all look and feel different, our active lifestyles can (and should) take different forms. Yet, there is still one universal truth: taking care of your physical health is essential to healthy aging.
We all know we should exercise, but what if you’ve lost touch with your sweaty side? How do you go about making your health a habit — or even a passion? We’ve partnered with Humana, a leader in healthy aging, to share a few tips to help you get active.
Keep your shoes by the door.
Have you ever found the sudden urge to get out and move, only to be unable to find your running or walking shoes? You tear through each and every hiding place, and by the time you’ve found your trainers, the sudden desire to get moving has faded.
Make your workout ready-and-waiting instead. Lay out the clothes you want to wear the night before. Keep what you need within easy reach — or even in your car. By making these steps less of a hassle, you’re breaking down barriers (whether they’re real or imagined). And by keeping your shoes in sight, you’re declaring an intention to make exercise a habit.
Surround yourself with an uplifting community.
You don’t have to be a professional athlete to find your own All-Star team. Whatever your fitness goals or favorite activities may be, others are bound to share common goals or interests and want to celebrate your successes with you. Catch up with a friend over a walk around the neighborhood — or in colder weather, fire up a YouTube exercise video together and get moving right in your living room. Find a golf partner who’d rather walk the course than drive a cart, or invite a family member to the gym for partner exercises or a group class.
Speaking of gyms: What if you want to join one, but don’t know where to start? Many health insurers have partnered with fitness programs to provide free or discounted exercise programs —and even free transportation — especially for older adults. Park districts and local gyms often offer these programs as well, so there’s a good chance there’s an affordable, age-appropriate fitness program near you.
Switch things up.
It’s common for anyone’s new fitness habit to start strong. But, at some point, a fitness routine becomes just that — routine. Do the same exercises long enough and your muscles eventually adapt, yielding fewer physical benefits for any rep, game or mile. Here’s where fitness classes come in handy. Try a range, from cardio to yoga to water-resistance training. The commitment will only be for an hour, but you might even find a new favorite hobby.
No matter your fitness level or age, staying active should be fun and enhance both your mental and emotional well-being. That’s why Humana’s Medicare Advantage plans include a membership in SilverSneakers, a free fitness program available in 16,000 gyms across the U.S. It’s important to check with your primary care physician before you start a new fitness routine, but remember: it all starts with a single step.
The Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plan Annual Election Period (AEP) runs through December 7, so, if you’re 65 or older, now’s the time to research your Medicare options. For more information to help you find a Humana Medicare Advantage plan that fits your goals and needs, visit Humana.com/Medicare.
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